awesome april (day 1) – a new challenge

So, no joke, I’ve challenged myself to post on my blog every day this month.  I thought it would be fun to show the day-to-day things that go on with my art life, from the creating, the marketing, the networking, etc.

Here’s what I’ve been up to the past few days.

Arts in the Square

Over the weekend, I was a part of the Arts in the Square here in Frisco. The weather was gorgeous, and there were tons of people that came out (thanks to all of my friends that stopped by).  I got to meet a lot of new people, too, which is always fun.  Here’s a shot of my booth – I had such a sweet setup on Saturday.

Misty Oliver-Foster art booth

I did learn, however, that even though it was only 70 degrees, it’s not a good idea to put your encaustic art in direct Texas sun.  Don’t worry, nothing was damaged, but I had to shuffle those pieces to the shady areas after lunch.

Sunday morning greeted us with crazy strong winds, so we had to adjust the booth layout a bit (we didn’t really have a choice).  At one point that morning, all the walls were down, and there were about 5 volunteers helping us hold things down so it didn’t blow away.  Not fun.  But, thanks to my logistically gifted husband, we got it back together and had a good Sunday, too. I went to bed Sunday night feeling like I was still swaying in the wind.

Prints in Progress

Tonight I went to hang out with some friends at the Visual Arts Guild of Frisco.  I took my youngest daughter and we had fun doing some printmaking.  Thanks to Deborah Gallatin for her great demo.  Here are some works in progress by a couple of artist friends of mine, Kelly Bartlett and Linda Brooks Alred. Looking good, gals.

artseen studio tour coming this october

So if you’ve found me here, there’s a pretty good chance you’ve already heard about the artseen studio tour, coming in October to Frisco.  Just in case you haven’t, let me fill you in.

Earlier in the year, I began collaborating with other artists and art lovers to come up with a way to connect our working artists with the community.  Many of us are involved with local arts groups, such as Frisco Arts and the Visual Arts Guild of Frisco, and we participate in many shows here in the area, including the great shows at thegallery8680.  But we wanted to make a more personal connection with other artists, collectors and admirers that we’ve met (and hopefully, some that we haven’t yet).   We decided to organize a studio tour, opening our creative spaces to the public.    And, thus, the artseen studio tour was born!

We’ve gathered a group of fifteen talented and diverse artists who wanted to show the community what they make and how they make it.  Some will be at their home studios, and others have paired with merchants in downtown Frisco to bring their ‘studio’ to the streets.  As a result, most of our artists are geographically close together, making the tour easy for our guests.  In addition to the artists, thegallery8680 is a part of the tour, featuring their new show “Black&White.”   The Visual Arts Guild of Frisco will host their Fall Member Show, “Beautiful” at The Art Gallery at Frisco Discovery Center during the tour as well.

pear studies, charcoal drawings of pears
pear studies

We are delighted to have two unique art collections open to the public during the tour.  Frisco residents Rex & Betsy Lowe are opening their home for guests to view their amazing private art collection in their Starwood home, and Marla Fields has gathered a small collection of works by Texas artist Frank Reaugh to be on display at her historic home in downtown Frisco.  We are so privileged to have these collections on the tour, and we are grateful to the  Lowes and Ms. Fields for joining us.

I hope you can make it to my studio on October 15 or 16.  I will be showing a lot of work that I haven’t shown before — drawings, prints, and mixed media works, as well as paintings that you love.  I’m looking forward to getting to share my sacred studio space with you.

For more information on the artseen studio tour, please visit:  http://www.artseenhere.com/studiotour2011

progress in motion

When I moved to Frisco, TX almost five years ago, I wasn’t quite sure what to expect on a personal level.  I knew it had great schools, so that appealed to my maternal need to give my kids “the best.”  It has a pretty good city plan, as far as suburbs go.  And we found a good little house in a nice neighborhood at a great price.  Plus, it had a studio for me!  But I wondered what would be in store for me career wise– you know, artistically.   At the time, I was doing a lot of decorative painting, which included murals and faux finishes, and Frisco was (and still is) one of the fastest-growing cities in the US.  There were lots of possibilities for those kinds of jobs here.  I kept pretty busy.

On the side, I was making my art when I could, and I was eager to meet other artists.  I was hoping that the art scene reflected the progressive attitude I saw in the rest of the city.   I joined the local art guild, and soon started meeting some great artists — many artists around my age who were making some really great work.  It really inspired me to keep making more art and to keep showing it.  Over the past couple of years, the art guild has grown into a really cool group (www.vagf.org), and it looks like the rest of the city is catching up.

Visual Arts Guild of Frisco art show
Visual Arts Guild of Frisco art show

This past weekend, we hosted the reception for our first show of 2011, “Resolutions,” to a crowd of well over 100 people.  We had a great time hanging out at the new Discovery Center– Frisco’s new visual and performing arts venue.   Awards were given, artwork was sold, new connections were made.   I had several conversations with other Friscoans (non-artists) that had been longing for art events to attend within the city limits.   They could actually have a classy date-night right here in town.

The previous weekend, thegallery8680 held their first opening of the year, and I am privileged to be a part of that show.  Director Robyn Parker Feehan is the visionary behind thegallery8680; she started the space last year to promote contemporary artists in the region.  This show, “Celebrating Women Artists” includes photography, drawing, painting and mixed media works from nine female artists from Texas.  The reception was a great success, again with over 100 people in attendance.  More proof that Frisco is becoming a hot spot for the visual arts in North Texas!

thegallery8680 reception
thegallery8680 reception

I really believe that moving to Frisco was the right move for me as an artist.  We’ve got a core group of artists who are working to create an active arts community.   It’s still in the formative stage, but we’re definitely headed in the right direction.  It will be interesting to see what the next few years bring.

If you’re in town, check out these exhibits:

The “Resolutions” VAGF Member Show will be on display at Frisco Discovery Center through Saturday, February 26.   Frisco Discovery Center is located at 8004 N. Dallas Parkway, Frisco 75034.  Hours are M-F 10-5, Sat. 10-6 and Sun. noon-6pm.  Admission is free.  Information on the Visual Arts Guild of Frisco can be found at www.vagf.org.

thegallery8680 presents "Celebrating Women Artists"
thegallery8680

“Celebrating Women Artists” runs through March 12 at thegallery8680, located at 8680 Main Street, Frisco 75034.  There will be a daytime reception/luncheon on Wednesday, March 9, from 11:30am – 3:00pm.  Visit thegallery8680 blog at www.thegallery8680.blogspot.com.   Call Robyn for an appointment to see the artwork at 214.585.8175.